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Posted by tango on May 06, 2003 at 09:05:28:
In Reply to: A lot of grave and important points you have made here,... posted by BrianSmith on May 06, 2003 at 07:56:16:
I wish you the best in your breeding projects. From your posts I know you have the experience to be successful as well as the awareness of the task you propose for yourself. It is just this side of monumental. BTW, the person who mentioned the skin/ meat trade in response to a ban on the reptile pet importation was me. Sometimes you have two devils to choose from, tragically - only one of those permits even a few to survive and live pretty decent lives. I have a pair of w/c Selayars that were imported in 2000. The majority of Selayars are destined for the skin trade because of their beautiful markings.
:I do think all of these things are very important. And I could write a novel and add to it, but I think that by saying I am on the same page as you should be enough. But I do try to remain in contact with those that have bought snakes from me in the past. But believe it or not, most of them have been one snake buyers and they usually fail to keep the emailing going. But I do try to keep up with it. And even when I am churning out great numbers of pythons in the near future I am going to make sure that I have a 24 hour 1 800 hotline available to anyone that needs it. I just thought up this idea the other day when I was realizing the magnitude of the likely number of the future customers and that I might not be able to handle it personally via email any more. So I am thinking up ways for there to be some form of help accessible around the clock. Other than that, yes I breed for health just as importantly as I breed for beauty and sell-ability. I ALWAYS insist on getting unrelated breeders and even then I take whatever added measures I can to better outcross the lines. And I am staying away from certain morphs right now in the boa group due to the apparent fact that inbreeding has made the lines so weak. I know I will probably get a lot of angry posts from people that have healthy boa morphs right now, but I know of MANY people that have lost even as many as three out of three boa morphs purchased. They just keeled with no apparent cause. To me this means weak genes and I won't take any part of that. I could be wrong, and quite frankly I hope that I am, and if so I may reconsider, but the evidence I have seen tells me otherwise. But I am in FULL agreement with you about the people that are in this just for the money. It's despicable. And I can never respect it. And to me those that import oodles of whichever species to sell them at a profit per animal that equates the cost of a milkshake, I think they are the scum of the herp world. That is no conscience there. And I am going to try to do something about that eventually if I can. But it's a problem with many variables and it must be approached with caution. Like one member pointed out in another thread,... what happens to the wild snakes if the pet trade market is eliminated? Are they then sold for their skin and meat? Most likely. So that is something to seriously think about. Anyhow,. thanks for responding to my post with such a meaningful reply. I'm glad there are other herpers/animal lovers out there like you. I have a deep respect for it and you.
::I didn't get the gyst of your question early- I thought you were just talking about wish lists, not creating a breeding project list. You've shown a decided preference for Bob Clark in your posts and my wish list contains only retics from my preferred breeders, the Baldogos. I think it is important to form a support relationship with a breeder that has a breeding project based on a blood-line etsablished with traits I consider desirable. Many of the questions I see on this forum could have been answered by a responsible breeder who will be there in the future as he/ she has been there repeatedly in the past. So many retics are being sold "as is," like used cars. When people pick up a retic at a show or pet store or on-line from someone who happens to have some for sale, there is no implied support relationship. There isn't even an implied breeding program- just a breeding between a male and female. You've written you've been in this hobby for a couple of decades as well as going back time and again to a specific breeder and I think that type of commitment is just as important as any morphs. Along side you, there are people breeding to ONLY make money. Notice I emphasized ONLY. Breeders do have to make money of course otherwise they could not breed. The difference is in service after a sale and long term established blood lines- breeding for desirable traits instead of breeding to cash in. I agree that there will be less of a problem with unwanted animals if one breeds only desirable animals but if those desirable animals are purchased by (sold to) uneducated people on a whim or if those desirable animals are (bred and) purchased solely on their physical characteristics, there will still be unwanted animals. You have the commitment, what I would look for after that is do you have the breeding project for a whole animal (tractability, health) and not just a morph?